NI/BEEcube Software Defined Radio (SDR) Gen-2

The National Instruments BEEcube-based nanoBEE and megaBEE Software Defined Radio (SDR) platform is a high-performance, scalable and flexible SoC-based computing platform with RF, FPGA, and network interfaces, fully programmable from Matlab/Simulink and proprietary software that allows multi-channel wireless prototyping. The large-capacity and customization features of the system allow for implementing complex Software Defined Radio system in the lab and real-world environment thus enabling research, development, and test.

Link to internal site: LAB - NI/BEEcube Software Defined Radio (SDR) Gen-2


  • Accelerates research by providing
    • A feature-rich platform for implementing and validating Software Defined Radio system architectures and algorithms
    • An automated design flow from MATLAB/Simulink (and/or proprietary software), reducing development effort and enabling platform use by application/domain experts
  • Addresses specific research needs through a hardware/software programmable system, in particular:
    • High-performance Digital Signal Processing (DSP)
    • Hardware-based application acceleration
  • Enables a faster path to commercialization by sourcing commercial-grade components and through compliance with commercial standards and interfaces (e.g., PCI-express, Ethernet).
  • Technical support and training from CMC Microsystems


  • Multi-channel wireless system prototyping:
    • Cellular
    • WiFi
    • L-/S-band SATCOM
    • Massive MIMO communications testbeds
  • MIMO RADAR systems
  • Cognitive radio networks
  • White space radios




  • Xilinx Zynq Z-7100
  • 1 or 2 FMC112 modules for 2×2 and 4×4 MIMO respectively:
    • Up to 56 MHz bandwidth per channel
    • RF range covers 70 MHz to 6 GHz
    • 23 dBm output power (2.3~2.7 GHz, 3.3~3.8 GHz and 4.9~5.9 GHz)
    • -94 dBm receiver sensitivity level
  • GPS module w/ external antenna connection
  • QSFP+ and 4 SFP+ connectors for up to 80Gbits of optical IO
  • 2 AuxIO connectors:
    • 8 GPIO + Clk_in + Clk_out per connector (100MHz max)
  • UART/JTAG for debugging
  • 1GbE for remote log in and management of the nanoBEE
  • Jitter cleaner for clock recovery and synchronization applications
  • Portable form factor

megaBEE SDR (8×8 / 16×16)

  • Eight wideband RF channels:
    • Up to 56 MHz bandwidth per channel
    • RF range covers 70 MHz to 6 GHz
    • 23 dBm output power (2.3~2.7 GHz, 3.3~3.8 GHz and 4.9~5.9 GHz)
    • -94 dBm receiver sensitivity level
  • Two Xilinx Zynq Z-7100 FPGAs with four ARM cores and 4040 DSP slices
  • Optimized for LTE and 5G cellular RF bands worldwide
  • Flexible MIMO SDR architecture
  • Clock architectures:
    • Flexible clock sources (19.2 MHz or 40 MHz)
    • Ultra-low jitter cleaner (<1ps RMS jitter) and clock distribution
    • Sub-ns accuracy clock synchronization based on IEEE 1588v2 protocol
  • SDR software compatibility:
    • HDL
    • MATLAB/Simulink
    • C/C++/Python
  • Peripherals:
    • 2 GB DDR3 and 8GB Flash Memory
    • 8x SFP+
    • 2x QSFP
    • 2x HDMI IN and OUT
    • 2x USB v 2.0 (Host)
    • 2x RJ-45 (1G Ethernet)
  • Compact 1U form factor

Contact Us

Hugh Pollitt-Smith
Team Leader, Embedded Systems
Office: 1.613.530.4668
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